Start Date: Aug 01, 2013
End Date: May 30, 2014
Children (infants, toddlers, and school-aged youths) will be studied longitudinally to evaluate the effects of infant diet (such as, breast-milk, dairy- and soy-based formulas, and other formulas), body composition and physical activity on physiological, behavioral and cognitive development in infants and children. Nutritional status assessments, anthropometric measurements, urine and blood analysis, and measures of psychological, neuropsychological, brain imagining (MRI, fMRI), and cognitive function will be assessed. The effects of diet composition, meal patterns, and meal frequency on brain function and behavioral dynamics that are important for learning and school performance in normal and overweight school children will be assessed using validated survey instruments and state-of-the-art research equipment. The effects of various interventions (e.g., physical activity on brain function of obese children) will be tested. Neurocognitive function will be characterized that contributes to or is a consequence of obesity in children, including brain-function correlates of food-seeking behavior.